User-generated content helps consumers buy a product or subscribe to a service they will most likely enjoy based on the “wisdom of the crowd”.
The degree to which user-generated content affects customers can be a result of the number of people promoting the business or product. The more, the merrier.
User-generated content describes marketing through any of the following forms of content: testimonials, reviews, videos, photos, discussions, blogs and more - all created by existing customers, and publicly available to other consumers.
Recent research shows that UGC is considered to be 50% more trustworthy than traditional marketing. No wonder savvy companies such as Daniel Wellington, Lululemon or GoPro have already started encouraging the creation and promotion of social proof through user-generated content on their marketing channels.
If you’re not leveraging UGC as much as you'd like, keep on reading…
Let your customers tell the story with user-generated content
1. GoPro’s Instagram campaign
With 65% of consumers admitting that they evaluate information that is shared on social media before buying, you wouldn’t want to miss out, would you?
Your customers are your best marketers. Encourage them to share more by creating hashtags on social media...you might be surprised at just how much people like to share!
GoPro’s social channels are a great example of user-generated content marketing. Their brand advocates are being encouraged to share “cool” content using #GoPro to be featured on the famous brand’s Instagram feed. GoPro then picks a new customer photo every day.
Here’s an example:
2. Apple’s “Shot on iPhone” campaign
Apple’s #ShotOnIphone campaign is one of the most successful user-generated content campaigns out there. The technology giant encouraged existing customers to showcase their amazing photography skills using nothing but their iPhones.
This campaign was launched after Apple noticed a lot of iPhone users were disappointed in the camera’s quality. To tackle this, Apple leveraged user-generated content to prove people wrong, give real-life proof to potential customers out there, and make existing customers feel part of a brand community.
Here’s a billboard from Apple’s ‘Shot on iPhone’ campaign:
3. MZ Wallace’s #CarryYourDay campaign
MZ Wallace prides itself on creating comfortable, lightweight, spacious and organised every-day bags for commuters, parents, travelers and everyone else.
Their social media strategy completely relies on user-generated content. The brand asks its customers to post photos of their bags on social media, using the hashtag #CarryYourday. MZ Wallace then shares the best shots with their audience, both on their feed and Instagram Stories. By turning regular customers into brand advocates through their Instagram community, MZ Wallace is reducing consumer doubt and increasing the "want" factor.
4. Smarty’s review campaign
Smarty is a mobile network that offers a discount on data that hasn’t been used. They let their amazing 3,000+ reviews on Trustpilot (and 8.8/10 score!) speak for themselves by leveraging their customers’ reviews on all channels.
Today, 54% of respondents will visit a website after reading positive reviews, and 92% of consumers read online reviews. This statement alone should be enough for companies to start putting more effort into leveraging online reviews as user-generated content.
That’s why Smarty uses the Trustpilot integration to share UGC on Facebook, and retweets customer testimonials on Twitter too. Leveraging reviews as user-generated content allows them to build trust throughout the customer journey.
Third-party review platforms like Trustpilot are more recognised and trusted by consumers because other customers’ feedback can not be edited or deleted by companies, which makes every single review on there completely authentic, and therefore more reliable and credible. Sharing existing customers’ feedback also creates a community of brand advocates, which is a great way to start putting more effort into your user-generated content strategy.
Getting started with user-generated content
Leveraging user-generated content will allow you to engage with existing customers, and turn them into brand advocates in order to build new, trusted relationships with future customers.
Allowing customers to tell your brand story will also improve loyalty, and create a great brand community. Remember - your customers’ stamp of approval means a lot more than your self-proclaimed excellence from a consumer's point of view!
Are you ready to apply UGC to your business?
Download Trustpilot's free report below, and find out what impact leveraging reviews as UGC could have on your marketing results.